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26 Jun '15

The best offense is a Cricket's Defense

Posted by Feeder Crickets

Some insects have large, powerful mandibles that can be used to attach and fend off an enemy from their territory.  Other insects are masterful aviators, soaring from predators, and attacking prey with stealth manuevers.  Some insects use poisonous stingers to threaten an invader, while some insects release noxious gases from their abdomans to discourage predatory insects from approaching.  

But with all of these defense mechanisms in place, crickets can’t benefit from any of them.  Crickets tend to get the raw end of the deal when it comes to defense.  The don’t sting, they don’t spray, and most of them cannot fly.  Not only are their defence mechanisms practically non-existent, natural selection has evolved the cricket into a plump, easy-to-chew, protein-enriching morsel for predation.  They have meat on their legs, and abdoman, making them an excellent nomination for prey.  


Here’s a run down of the delectable vitamins, minerals, and other nutritional goods in crickets:

Protein: 15.77%

Moisture: 77.66%

Fat: 8.47%

Fiber: 2.21%

Ash: 1.19%

Crickets and Camo

Although crickets get the raw end of the deal in regards to self-defense, they aren’t entirely helpless.  Camouflage is a popular defense mechanism for insects that choose flight over fight, and it’s one that crickets do their best to exploit.  Crickets can be in dull shades of grey, brown, and even green.  The combination of these colors allow the crickets to hide from predators, by blending into their environments.  Although camouflage isn’t always the cricket’s best method of defense, it’s beneficial that some of the crickets’ predators don’t have very good eye site.


Jumping is a Cricket’s best Defense

But the most well known defense mechanism for crickets are their legs.  A cricket can jump anywhere between 20 - 30 times their length!  Which in human measurements equates to about 3 feet.  A 3 foot jump would be good for even a human!  But if we want to fathom how remarkable that is, consider a 6’ person jumping 20-30 times their height.  That person could jump anywhere between 120’ - 180’!  That’s a hell of a distance.  But, similar to crickets, the jump would certainly be uncontrollable and force the patron into a harsh landing.  


But don’t feel sorry for these crickets.  Although hiding and jumping are their only recourses of defense, it makes them that much more consumable for some of our favorite herp pets.  

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